You envision your peaceful fowl wandering the yard, the stately crow of a rooster bringing up the sun in the morning, and fresh eggs collected daily from your coop. It all sounds magnificent, so why would you not want to have your own small flock of chickens? The fact is, people who have little to no experience with owning, raising, and caring for chickens often find themselves in way over their heads once they invest in a flock of their own. There are a few facts you definitely need to know before you make the decision to bring home your very own chickens. 

1. Chickens require a lot of protection because they have many predators. 

Chickens kind of fall somewhere near the bottom of the food chain. They cannot fly more than a few feet off of the ground and make easy targets for all kinds of predators, such as:

  • hawks, owls, and other birds of prey
  • possums
  • raccoons
  • dogs, cats, and other pets
  • rats, minks, and other rodents

Before you bring chickens onto your property, you have to ensure you will be capable of protecting them. They need an enclosed coop to sleep in that has no small cracks or holes. They need adequate enclosures to keep them safe from dogs, cats, and other roaming animals through the day as well. 

2. Chickens do need occasional veterinarian treatment. 

Chickens can contract all kinds of illnesses and diseases through their life span. From Marek's disease in chicks to hens becoming eggbound because an egg is lodged inside of her, you may find many situations when a trip to a vet, such as After Hours Veterinary Emergency Clinic Inc, will be necessary. Even though many vets do treat poultry and other fowl, many do not, so finding someone to help you when one of your birds is not well can be difficult. 

3. Free-roaming chickens can be against local ordinances in some areas. 

Most of the time, chickens will hang around close to where they nest and sleep. However, they can get motivated to go further when food is involved, and not every location is chicken friendly. In fact, some area have ordinances in place preventing property owners from having chickens in their backyard or on their property because they can be considered a nuisance to surrounding businesses or residents. Therefore, it is best to ensure you know the local animal laws before bringing chickens onto your property. Otherwise, you could be dealing with issues with fines, local complaints, and animal control.